The 20 Most Important People to Oklahoma State’s 2019 Season

first_imgIt’s almost time for Mike Gundy to roll out his two-QB package and the OSUs to interlock horns in Corvallis this weekend. As we all know, Friday evening games on national television always go well.This is a big year for a lot of people. The main ones we’ve talked about are, of course, the quarterbacks. But it’s also a big year for Mike Gundy (he peeled off three straight 10-win seasons last time he went 7-6) and the OSU program in general. It’s a big year for two guys who are about to get paid (2 and 30) and a big year for a couple of coordinators who are unproven in this conference.While the non-conference slate isn’t what I would call daunting (or even challenging), Texas in Austin to start Big 12 play looms large. If OSU is going to start another run of 30 wins in three years, it will start there, and it will start at the top of my list of the 20 most important people to the 2019 OSU season.1. Jim Knowles: It’s not like last year can blamed entirely on the defense, but the numbers are the numbers and the numbers for Knolwes are not pretty.Screen Shot 2019-08-28 at 8.40.13 PM.png2. Mike Gundy: He has more or less been saying this for the past few months. Last time he went 7-6, he only lost nine games in the next three years. I don’t know that another string like that is on deck, and I’m not sure what we’re getting this year, but if OSU wants to be good, Gundy needs to be better.3. Dru Brown: I think he ends up being the guy for most of the year. I’m fine with this. Not elated but not really bummed out either. He doesn’t need to be elite — OSU could have won nine games with Taylor Cornelius at the helm — but he needs to play at a high level more consistently than No. 14 did.4. Chuba Hubbard: Good enough to carry a squad by himself. You can feasibly structure a 9-win offense around Chuba and trash depending on how good your defense is (and OSU doesn’t have trash around Chuba on offense). He’s elite.5. Tylan Wallace: Might be the best player in the Big 12. Might not be the best player on his own team (although I think he is).6. Sean Gleeson: I’m excited for Gleeson to post the same PPD number Yurcich did his last four years and get the red carpet treatment. Never be the guy who follows the legend. Always be the guy who follows Yurrich. #narratives7. Dylan Galloway: He has five starts, which makes him one of the least-experienced offensive linemen but one of the most-experienced offensive players. OSU needs to not allow the equivalent of 34 sacks in 2019, and it starts with Galloway at LT.Screen Shot 2019-08-28 at 8.46.17 PM.png8. Dillon Stoner: This is probably too high, but he’s such a steady presence. Has been since he started his playing career under Les Miles.9. Matt Ammendola: OSU playing close games that need closing kicks to lock up heart-stopping victories both on the road and at home? Never heard of it.10. Spencer Sanders: I have resigned myself to thinking he’s not going to play all that much this season. I could be talked into having him as high as No. 2, though, and as low as No. 20.11. Calvin Bundage: It’s strange to have a backup linebacker in my top 11 to start the season, but he’s such an x-factor on defense. Related: NCAA is considering changing the neutral zone to be called the Bundage zone for the 2020 season.12. Tyler Lacy: Gundy said he “slept” through his freshman year, and yet he somehow snagged a starting spot on the defensive line in Year 2. That tells me he’s special.13. Jelani Woods: The most underrated weapon in the country?14. Amen Ogbongbemiga: If you can’t tell, I’m nervous about linebacker!15. Kolby Harvell-Peel: I am all the way in. I think he’s probably a future pro and could (and will) be a monster in the secondary this season.16. LD Brown: I had him at No. 10 in our podcast breaking this down, but after realizing that I’m a moron for putting him ahead of Sanders, I dropped him here. It’s probably still too high, but I guess my point is that going into last season OSU had great safety nets with Chuba and J.D. King at RB2. This year, they have question marks.17. Sam Ehlinger: If he lays an egg in the first game, the path to the Big 12 title gets [looks around wide-eyed] pretty straightforward for these Cowboys.18. Jalen Hurts: Are we 100 percent positive he’s going to be the real deal? I mean, probably, right? But OSU took them to the wire last year in Norman with the Heisman winner and No. 1 pick at the helm. If Hurts slips or gets injured, the Bedlam door could (could!) open.19. Malcolm Rodriguez: I want to see Gundy try and recruit a team solely made up of guys who wrestled in high school.20. Bryce Bray: He’s the only newbie on the OL, and he has a chance to be its face for the next four seasons. I’m excited about the renaissance. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img

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